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GE Renewable Energy confirms Teesside wind turbine deal delays but mayor says ‘nothing has changed’  

Credit:  More than 2,000 direct and indirect jobs have been touted in the past | By Alex Metcalfe | 17 Dec 2021 | www.gazettelive.co.uk ~~

A global giant behind a wind turbine project earmarked for Teesside has confirmed the firm is facing delays sealing a deal on the new plant.

General Electric unveiled plans for a renewable energy facility at Teesworks to create 750 direct jobs earlier this year.

But the company has now confirmed there has been a setback with the offshore wind project.

A spokesperson for GE said: “GE Renewable Energy’s LM Wind Power business is currently facing delays in the finalisation of the leasing agreement and design to open its new blade manufacturing plant in Teesside, England.

“GE Renewable Energy continues to work actively with local and national stakeholders, and its customers on this specific project.”

The turbine factory was touted to supply the enormous Dogger Bank wind farm, off Teesside’s coast, which starts its first installation phase in 2023.

A further 1,500 jobs have been promised in the supply chain from the scheme.

More contracts for the vast Dogger Bank project have been given out recently.

Reports of snags first emerged in Renewable Energy News over claims GE was putting plans on ice due to concerns about Siemens winning key wind farm contracts.

Stockton North MP Alex Cunningham sought clarification on the situation on Thursday evening after reports about the setback emerged.

Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen launched an attack on the Labour Party – accusing the “usual suspects of spreading rumours”.

He added: “ I can confirm that GE are completely committed to coming to Teesside and we continue to work with them to finalise legal agreements and factory building specifications.

“Preparation of the site is almost ready and construction of the factory will start early next year.

“GE has won contracts to build offshore wind blades on the basis that they make them in Teesside, as has also been confirmed by Equinor who gave GE the contract for the blades.

“As far as we are aware, the project is progressing at pace and as we expected having had meetings with GE as recently as this week.”

The offshore wind project off the Yorkshire coast will become the biggest scheme of its kind in the world when completed in 2026.

US-based GE Renewable Energy has lined up Teesside to make 107-metre-long blades from its Teesworks base.

The UK Infrastructure Bank backed the plans with a £107m loan offered for the new South Bank Quay where work has started.

Despite the lease and design snags, Mr Houchen insisted timelines and job numbers from the new project would be realised – with the plan still to “stick a spade in the ground early next year”.

The Conservative mayor added: “We are continuing at pace. The leases are still continuing at pace. Nothing has changed. GE has not communicated anything to us on timelines.

“There are still 750 jobs, it’s still the same timescale and nothing has changed.”

Source:  More than 2,000 direct and indirect jobs have been touted in the past | By Alex Metcalfe | 17 Dec 2021 | www.gazettelive.co.uk

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

The copyright of this article resides with the author or publisher indicated. As part of its noncommercial effort to present the environmental, social, scientific, and economic issues of large-scale wind power development to a global audience seeking such information, National Wind Watch endeavors to observe “fair use” as provided for in section 107 of U.S. Copyright Law and similar “fair dealing” provisions of the copyright laws of other nations. Send requests to excerpt, general inquiries, and comments via e-mail.

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